I frequently get questions about retrograde planets and they are often misunderstood because everyone always thinks of Mercury retrograde as being universally bad and that is not true for everyone.  We have a lot of Retrograde activity happening :

Venus is retrograde now until June 25th

Mercury goes retrograde June 17-July 12th

Mars will retrograde this year Sept 9-Nov. 14th

Jupiter is retrograde until Sept. 12th

Saturn is retrograde until Sept. 28th

Uranus goes retrograde August 25h

Pluto is retrograde until  Oct 5th

Neptune is retrograde until Nov. 28th.


It is thought if the retrograde planet is the owner of the chart that it become stronger for the person but makes them more inward. The houses, nakshatras and signs that the retrograde happens in the natal chart are key and then in transit if it is in the natal chart, it gets triggered in transit.

Retrograde malefics are more problematic and stronger to cause harm and retrograde benefics often are more powerful to cause more good but it may depend on your rising sign and whether it is retrograde or not in your natal chart.

Some general things you can say about retrogrades:

  • The planet’s energy may reverse pulling the energy back into the sign that it is retrograding into.  This is true of the planet is close to the end of a sign as is the case with Jupiter at the end of Sagittarius and pulling it back even now into Sagittarius.
  • There are more medical problems from retrograde planets in Ayurveda  particularly if they are malefics. .
  • The flow of the planet’s normal energy is disrupted and the house that the planet occupies will be affected and not work fully.  The houses that the planets owns will also be weaker.
  • Retrograde makes planet stronger which does not mean better.  Retrograde malefics like Saturn and Mars may be stronger to do more harm unless they are the chart lord and then they are better for the person in which case they may make the person more inward.

Parashara indicates that a retrograde motion will reverse the effect of an exalted or debilitated planet but that is controversial. Exalted Retrograde Saturn acts debilitated– not totally true. The reality is that an exalted Saturn will still externally produce good results like good technical competence, making one clever and focused, well organized, faithful, practical and good in foreign connections but inside a person may have the debilitated qualities of Saturn including some depression, self-deprecation, fear and feeling frustrated even if outwardly things go well. There becomes a schism between the outer and inner realities.

Retrograde planet must be in the natal chart and then will manifest during retrograde transits mainly but may not show their problems when direct in transit.

Some general qualities of retrograde planets in a natal chart:

Mars: Less inclined to act; procrastinators;

Mercury: More intuitive people and reverses Mercury’s normal logical mind.  Non-linear thinkers.

Jupiter: Creates bargain hunters and people who help the disadvantaged and weak.

Venus: Reverse sexual norms and they could become celibate, frigidity in women or some tendency toward gay/bi sexual or being at  odds with traditional marriage and partnering.

Saturn : Renunicates, monastic, self-isolating; alone; rejects others so they will not be rejected; grim, depressed.

As always there are many factors that govern judging every planet including how many benefic and malefic aspects associations there are to the retrograde planet, placement in the D-9 chart, nakshatra influences, houses involved and houses owned but these are some general guidelines.

Special thanks to Bill Levacy, James Braha and Sanjay Rath for some of their insights on this material.  See the full article in my book, Finding Your Blind Spots in Astrology available on my website under the Books Tab or on Amazon if you want a hard copy.

FINDING YOUR BLIND SPOTS USING ASTROLOGY (2nd edition revised) by Barry Rosen

Need help with these difficult transits and tensions and problems in your life?   Get a consultation from Barry Rosen.




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